E n   u n   c l i n   d ‘ œ i l   (  2 3 h   5 9 m   6 0 s  )

Event (intervention/ happening):  31.12.08  |  L’Observatoire de Paris  |  61, Avenue de l’Observatoire  |  75014 Paris

Duration: 1 second

At once a simultaneous announcement, question, signal and celebration, En un clin d’œil proposes a concurrent appearance and negation of time.

December 31st, 2008 spent its very last minute of the year as one amounting to 61 seconds. The Observatoire de Paris and IERS (International Earth Rotation and Reference Systems Service) explain this in terms of a positive “leap second”. To mark this rare, intermittent occasion, a bespoke projected digital clock made “visible” this addition of time.

The moment was further celebrated with a ‘non-light’ event. On the eve of December 31st, parts of Paris’ 14e arrondissement witnessed a split-second negation of light, as 168 street lampposts of this influential area became simultaneously switched off, for the mere split-second that the leap second came into being.

A fleeting event that disappeared within but the blink of an eye, this single second non-(street)light orchestration wished to signal and question this ‘appearance’ of time.

“The city blinks.”

Clignoter in French means not only to blink, but also to flicker and or to flash (to signal). In this ephemeral moment, the artist proposes that Paris encounter a glimpse of non-time.

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